Various reports confirm that 54 were killed in Kabul when a bomber threw himself into a crowd that had gathered at Abul Fazl shrine to worship. Four were killed in the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif and none died in the southern city of Kandahar where the attacker hid a bomb under a parked motorcycle.
The attacks targeted Afghanistan's minority Shiite population and mark the first major incident of religiously motivated violence since the fall of Afghanistan's Taliban regime; sectarian violence is more frequent in neighboring Pakistan. Like Kabul, the attack in Kandahar also targeted a Shiite procession, but it missed and hit policemen and bystanders, Kandahar Police Chief Abdul Razaq told The New York Times.
No group has yet to claim responsibility for the attack, though it is suspected to fall on the Taliban or an allied terrorist network.